Sara's Reviews > The Mystery of 2012: Predictions, Prophecies & Possibilities

The Mystery of 2012 by Gregg Braden
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Feb 06, 10

really liked it
bookshelves: own-it
Read in January, 2010

I became extremely interested in the 2012 Mayan Calendar end date during a discussion, and subsequently purchased several books on the topic. I purchased about 4 of the most popular nonfiction titles, and of them all I feel this book is by far the most representative of the many different viewpoints and theories that exist regarding what the "end" of Mayan calendar and the alignment of the Sun with the center of our galaxy both mean. Perspectives on these points are highly divergent, which is one of the reasons I would rate this book as the highest if you're interested in this topic.

This book contains essays from approximately 26 scholars, astronomers, academicians, theologians, cosmologists, archeologists, geologists, or other theorists, the credentials of which all vary quite wildly from doctors to laypersons. The Mystery of 2012 does an excellent job of including the well-known scholars & theorists in the area. Each contributor presents their viewpoint, and the reader can take away from it what they will. Some of the theories regard the possible end of the world, a spiritual movement that will take place en masse, a potential polar shift, and the creation of a new world. The book is also divided into four major sections:

Part 1: The Mayan Calendar and Mayan Cosmovision
Part 2: Science, Business, and Politics in the Context of 2012
Part 3: Spirituality, Signs, & Symbolism Surrounding 2012
Part 4: A New Humanity: Toward 2012 and Beyond

Each section does an excellent job of covering all the aspects of 2012 without jumping all over the place or getting bogged down in too many details. Part 1 gives an overview of Maya history, the meaning of their calendar, why December 21, 2012 is significant according to their calendar, the spiritual practices and beliefs of the Maya, and interpretations of what the Mayans knew and how they were so precise and ahead of their time mathematically, in terms of astronomy, and the most precise and accurate calendar ever conceived. The second part offers the perspectives of several contributors as to the potential implications of the upcoming galactic alignment and how it will shape the way our world works - and how it is already having an impact. Part 3 delves more into the spiritual significance of 2012 and many comparisons with other cultures and ancients texts - such as the Bible - that also support the importance of 2012 are compared. The final section discusses the implications of what will happen as a society and globally once we have reached this point in time. In the end, each other does agree that we are at a critical point in the history of the earth and mankind, and that continuing on our current path is destructive. It's difficult for me to disagree with that premise, considering the state of the world today. It is more precarious than ever.

I also recommend this book because each perspective is typically presented with a factual basis. As a researcher who reads with skepticism, I appreciate the factual basis upon which most contributors based their theories (whether they are true or will come true or not). Yet the book is written in an accessible and well-organized manner. The reader will certainly come away with a better understanding of Mayan culture, how highly advanced and incredibly precise they were, and their religious beliefs and practices are all well defined. There is a great deal of fascinating material in this book.

I felt more in touch with some of the theories than others, but again I feel that is a strong point of this book - it does not subscribe to one particular viewpoint. Rather, it allows the leading theorists in this area to lay out the evidence they have encountered and synthesize it for the reader. The ultimate question, clearly, is also the premise of the book: What will happen on December 21, 2012?

Anyone searching for a precise answer to that question will be profoundly disappointed, not because this book doesn't address the matter, but because ultimately, we have no way of knowing until we get there (hence the subtitle "Predictions, Prophecies & Possibilities"). Any book claiming to know exactly what will happen on that date is about as prophetic as all the people who helped create the "Y2K" pandemonium ten years ago. So what will happen? Honestly people, who knows, but if anything will, or you're at least interested in why this date is so significant, this book does a stellar job of addressing those points.

There are several different answers to this question within the book, some more extreme than others but none necessarily mutually exclusive. The answers the book does provide are interesting, thought provoking, and insightful. I enjoyed the incredible mix of the theoretical, metaphysical, geological, cosmological, anthropological, and the spiritual all in one book. Other books on this topic tend to focus solely on one aspect, and the gift of this book is that it does not tell you what to think - it presents the evidence and lets you decide for yourself. If certain authors pique your interest, many of them have longer, more in-depth publications out there as well. This book is a great place to start to have a well-rounded primer on the many potential possibilities that December 21, 2012 carries with it.
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11/22/2009 page 81
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Sara No it's not too big; just the size of decent novel anyway. And it's made up of a collection of essays by different experts on the subjects, which I think improves the book as a whole because a) it goes by faster as you're reading it, and b) you get a more nuanced perspective. Many of the authors have written books of their own the subject, and each has a different perspective. This book is really interesting - but it gets past all the hype of 2012 and actually educates you as to what the Mayan calendar symbolized and the possible implications from a number of different perspectives. It's not some doomsday prophecy book about the end of the world, like many people are trying to capitalize on. But it is most definitely a fascinating read, and based upon my progress so far it presents numerous perspectives about what 2012 means - the end of the world, a polar shift, major geological activity on the earth, a spiritual revolution - so far I've read about all that and then some. Not a difficult read, but satisfying for those of us that want substance as well.

Sara It's actually written such that laypersons can understand it, and the authors all do a very good job of explaining their particular areas. Some are more complicated than others, but it's not academically a difficult book to read - just very engaging. I think even someone in high school could easily understand most of this book. A lot of it focuses on the Mayans, which is a based on history. If you can understand history, it's not much more complicated than that. It's not written in the scientific jargon that some other books on this topic are. I own several of them, and this is by far the most accessible.

Shellie (Layers of Thought) I have this wonderful link about some Mayan ruins - I think you would like. There are three videos about it there.

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